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-   -   Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid. (http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=189224)

MindBlind 11-25-17 08:08 AM

Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Last year I was diagnosed with ADHD and I think itís an accurate diagnosis. However due to my mood swings over the years and antidepressants needing to be switched and adjusted, Iím seriously suspecting that I might have Bipolar 2. Iím not sure about that. I feel stupid because the ADHD diagnosis took so long to get assessed for and people invested a lot of time and effort into helping me but Iím still not functioning. Iím worried that if I bring up Bipolar that theyíll think Iím just shopping for a diagnosis. I donít know what to do right now. Maybe keep a mood chart?

Emre22 11-25-17 08:16 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MindBlind (Post 1975277)
Last year I was diagnosed with ADHD and I think itís an accurate diagnosis. However due to my mood swings over the years and antidepressants needing to be switched and adjusted, Iím seriously suspecting that I might have Bipolar 2. Iím not sure about that. I feel stupid because the ADHD diagnosis took so long to get assessed for and people invested a lot of time and effort into helping me but Iím still not functioning. Iím worried that if I bring up Bipolar that theyíll think Iím just shopping for a diagnosis. I donít know what to do right now. Maybe keep a mood chart?

Have you ever experienced something like hypomania or manic episode?
I have mood swings too but my doctor said it is happening because i have too much impulsivity.
I think it isnt easy to say that you have bipolar disorder due to only mood swings.

MindBlind 11-25-17 01:31 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Emre22 (Post 1975282)
Have you ever experienced something like hypomania or manic episode?
I have mood swings too but my doctor said it is happening because i have too much impulsivity.
I think it isnt easy to say that you have bipolar disorder due to only mood swings.


I have had hypomanic symptoms and mixed symptoms but I agree - mood swings donít automatically mean bipolar. I hope these mood swings are just the impulsivity part of my ADHD but itís distressing nonetheless.

allesandro1 11-25-17 08:41 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
that's a tough question. I think maybe seeing someone weekly might be a good idea because they can offer an objective opinion. it's a tricky diagnosis.

DeClutter 11-27-17 06:37 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MindBlind (Post 1975277)
I’m worried that if I bring up Bipolar that they’ll think I’m just shopping for a diagnosis. I don’t know what to do right now. Maybe keep a mood chart?

AD(H)D and Bipolar do overlap in my opinion, if i look back at my life there have been highs and lows, which could even fit in hypomaniac and depressed states.

But ussually when i look back there are clearly parallel factors in my life that i can point out that from an ADD/hyperfocus point of view influence my mood states for longer periods of time. It is rarely that i get depressed when things are going well, same goes for the other way around. I think herein lies the difference.

Lash107 11-27-17 08:11 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
There’s no reason to feel stupid...only a qualified doctor (psychiatrist) can evaluate you for bipolar disorder. In my opinion, a mood chart can be helpful ... but the first thing is to see a psychiatrist as soon as possible.

I have bipolar disorder 1 and I’ve found that I’ve had issues with concentration, distractibility, focus, etc., that have some similarities to ADD.

Follow your gut instinct and if you do not like the psychiatrist, go see another one. Describe your symptoms and your concern that you may have bipolar disorder. Let them know about any meds you are on and any other diagnoses (such as ADHD diagnosis). They will take it from there.

Keep us posted!

sarahsweets 12-01-17 05:54 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
I am bipolar II and I had to treat that first before I could address the adhd. I take a cocktail of meds that saved my life and have kept me out of the hospital for quite a few years. For me the "mania" isnt your typical risk taking, dangerous mania. Its hypomania where I wont sleep and get super super hype and up. My husband will always notice this before me and ask me if I took my meds and I get mad at him and say" why cant I just be happy. why does it always have to be a bipolar thing"? Them Ill be up all night inapproriately starting projects and leaving them, cleaning and just up. Then comes the depressive crash where I am on the couch for three days. My point is my husband knows the mania is cycle is happening before I do. I dont even realize its starting or that I am in it until the depressive crash.

MindBlind 01-01-18 08:57 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by DeClutter (Post 1975584)
AD(H)D and Bipolar do overlap in my opinion, if i look back at my life there have been highs and lows, which could even fit in hypomaniac and depressed states.

But ussually when i look back there are clearly parallel factors in my life that i can point out that from an ADD/hyperfocus point of view influence my mood states for longer periods of time. It is rarely that i get depressed when things are going well, same goes for the other way around. I think herein lies the difference.

Well I am admittedly quite reactive to the events in my life, however a lot of my moods just come out of nowhere. Iíll go through periods of feeling low and Iíll still feel like crap even when things are okay. Iíve also had periods of incredible optimism despite plunging into debt due to impulse spending and ebay bidding. Last year I won a prize from a summer challenge and I ended up having this idea in my head that I could win stuff or get rich by virtue of being more ďluckyĒ, I guess. I also signed up for a bunch of classes and ended up enrolling on a masters program (which I ended up having to take time out of because of anxiety and paranoia). At least, my family thought that I jumped into it too quickly (though thatís also an ADHD thing).

Oh, and my moods are way more sensitive these days to the seasons. Never used to be this way until I went to uni. Itís usually the springtime and summer months that I embark on the zaniest of my zany schemes and in autumn and winter when I just want to crawl into a cave and die. Apparently bipolar people are highly susceptible to SAD so I thought Iíd mention that.

With all that being said, there very well could have been extenuating circumstances that triggers these mood changes instead of bipolar. Like, I still feel tired because of insomnia (well, my body does anyway). I think if into were genuine bipolarity I wouldnít still feel physically tired from lack of sleep. Iím tracking my symptoms so hereís hoping that itís not bipolar and thatís iím just being a hypochondriac.

Thanks folks! Iíll keep you guys posted.

CharlesH 01-02-18 12:40 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
In general, the way I think of this issue is that ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder. That means that, if you have always had symptoms of hyperactivity/inattention that can be traced consistently to early childhood, and if those symptoms cannot be better explained by a different disorder, then you probably have (at least) ADHD.

If the answer to the above is no, then you probably should never have been diagnosed with ADHD in the first place, and bipolar looks more likely.

If you do indeed have ADHD, then figure out with your treatment team whether the hypomanic symptoms can be reasonably explained by your ADHD. If yes, then you probably don't have bipolar. If no, then you probably have both ADHD and bipolar.

MindBlind 03-02-18 12:08 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
So about last week, I finally saw my psychiatrist after several difficult months. I kept a mood log, tracked my menstrual cycles and got a blood test (incase it was hormonal). The blood test did reveal that I have low folate levels so Iím taking folic acid right now. Iím relieved to know that is being taken care of and Iím starting to have more energy, which is good.

My moods are still a bit of a mystery. I told my psychiatrist about how my symptoms were persistent in spite of the increased dose and that I suspected that concerta was making my anxiety worse. He was very dismissive of what I was saying, assuring me that the SSRI should be acting as an anxiolytic and that Concerta shouldnít be making me anxious. He didnít want to see my mood chart, asserting that itís not necessary because they only use it for diagnostic purposes. That annoyed me because it was the CPN that told me to keep a mood chart because itís easier to find patterns and triggers that way. He wanted to completely externalise my problems, as if my low moods were only caused by uni stress when it was my mood that was the biggest obstacle in my productivity, ergo causing me to drop out.

I mean, granted, heís not very familiar with me and he was only seeing me because my actual psychiatrist wasnít able to see me then. That and I know he has to be careful not to just push drugs (especially something like lithium) on me when my issues could very well be alleviated by stable employment or being in education. Still, I was annoyed by his attitude and how he brushed off my symptoms. At this point, I havenít even used the word Ďbipolarí yet and I donít necessarily think it is that specific disorder, but my mood swings are incredibly distressing and while I appreciate that thereís no magic fix to all this, Iíd like for him to at least pretend to take me seriously, ya know? Bipolar or not, this ******* sucks.

So right now Iím on the same meds (plus the folic acid) and Iíve just started a new job. Fortunately, things are stable right now (which I hope proves that it was just the folate levels what done this). Iím continuing to keep note of my moods and Iím just hoping that the dr was right about employment fixing my moods or whatever. But Iím not taking any chances with my mental health because I canít afford to lose my job right now.

Anyway, thatís my update.

sarahsweets 03-02-18 02:10 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MindBlind (Post 1987243)
I told my psychiatrist about how my symptoms were persistent in spite of the increased dose and that I suspected that concerta was making my anxiety worse. He was very dismissive of what I was saying, assuring me that the SSRI should be acting as an anxiolytic and that Concerta shouldnít be making me anxious. He didnít want to see my mood chart, asserting that itís not necessary because they only use it for diagnostic purposes. That annoyed me because it was the CPN that told me to keep a mood chart because itís easier to find patterns and triggers that way. He wanted to completely externalise my problems, as if my low moods were only caused by uni stress when it was my mood that was the biggest obstacle in my productivity, ergo causing me to drop out.

DOUCHE ALERT. Disregard everything he said to you. He's not your regular doctor and he is plain wrong. Mood charts can be essential tools in evaluating how well medication works and connecting the dots with everyday stressors and out of the norm stress. Methlyphenidate products are liken poison to us bipolars. I have no science to back me up, only anectdotal experience and the experiences with others. I dont know what it is about that chemical but its in ritalin concerta and others and it flipped my moods all over the place. I have done much better with amphetamines( over 13 years).


Quote:

I mean, granted, heís not very familiar with me and he was only seeing me because my actual psychiatrist wasnít able to see me then. That and I know he has to be careful not to just push drugs (especially something like lithium) on me when my issues could very well be alleviated by stable employment or being in education. Still, I was annoyed by his attitude and how he brushed off my symptoms. At this point, I havenít even used the word Ďbipolarí yet and I donít necessarily think it is that specific disorder, but my mood swings are incredibly distressing and while I appreciate that thereís no magic fix to all this, Iíd like for him to at least pretend to take me seriously, ya know? Bipolar or not, this ******* sucks.
Since he was filling in, its even more of a reason to disregard him and for him to keep his opinions beyond what your regular doctor says to himself.

MindBlind 03-02-18 04:26 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Hey Sarahsweets,

Yeah, I think there might have been a clerical error as he assumed that I had contact with the other doctor prior to our appointment. I actually have no idea why I was seeing this guy. Maybe the referral letter was sent to the wrong patient? I dunno. In any case he might have felt like it shouldnít be his call to go a certain direction with treatment without the other guyís approval, which is probably why he was so reluctant to start anything different.

But yeah, he was a douche. I never felt like he was actually listening to me and I had a sneaking suspicion that he just thought I wanted to use him for free drugs or something like that (though not really sure why a junkie would want off a euphorant but whatever). He also alluded to something about bipolar disorder and it sounded like he was suggesting that I couldnít possibly have it because Iím not up for days on end. I know that reduced need for sleep is a hallmark symptom of bipolar disorder but I do have a history of insomnia and even if I didnít, the DSM-V says that you only need to suffer from a handful of the symptoms of mania or hypomania to be diagnosed. Not telling the dude how to do his job, but still...pretty sloppy.

Iím not in any rush to label myself with anything but Iím worried that if my moods are still the same in the future (or worse) then it could be very detrimental to my future and I really need stability in my life right now. The issue I have now is that I donít know how much of my problem is a genuine mood disorder and how much of it is just the typical ADHD emotional lability. So far in my log, my moods do shift and they shift greatly but itís sustained for at least a good few days to a couple of weeks at a time. Iím still trying to figure out what my triggers might be, especially considering that my PMS symptoms donít correlate too much with the mood shifts. It does affect me to an extent but I distinctly remember having depressive symptoms throughout my entire menstrual cycle at one point so who knows?

One thing I do notice about my moods more than ever is that I perk up like crazy when itís sunny. I think I mentioned this before but itís definitely a big factor. Aside from that, I canít think of many things that particularly stand out as a trigger. My moods just happen to me, I guess.

Thanks for your feedback. Itís very reassuring to receive compassion from others about this.

sarahsweets 03-02-18 07:14 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MindBlind (Post 1987278)
Hey Sarahsweets,

Yeah, I think there might have been a clerical error as he assumed that I had contact with the other doctor prior to our appointment. I actually have no idea why I was seeing this guy. Maybe the referral letter was sent to the wrong patient? I dunno. In any case he might have felt like it shouldnít be his call to go a certain direction with treatment without the other guyís approval, which is probably why he was so reluctant to start anything different.

I assumed you had a previous doctor doing the prescribing, is that true?


Quote:

But yeah, he was a douche. I never felt like he was actually listening to me and I had a sneaking suspicion that he just thought I wanted to use him for free drugs or something like that (though not really sure why a junkie would want off a euphorant but whatever). He also alluded to something about bipolar disorder and it sounded like he was suggesting that I couldnít possibly have it because Iím not up for days on end. I know that reduced need for sleep is a hallmark symptom of bipolar disorder but I do have a history of insomnia and even if I didnít, the DSM-V says that you only need to suffer from a handful of the symptoms of mania or hypomania to be diagnosed. Not telling the dude how to do his job, but still...pretty sloppy.
He must not know the difference between BPI and BPII which makes him very sloppy indeed. Yes BPI tends to be more severe and the reduced need for sleep is more evident.But its not a requirement with BPII to have manic nights where you dont sleep. He seriously needs the spark notes on these disorders.

Quote:

Iím not in any rush to label myself with anything but Iím worried that if my moods are still the same in the future (or worse) then it could be very detrimental to my future and I really need stability in my life right now. The issue I have now is that I donít know how much of my problem is a genuine mood disorder and how much of it is just the typical ADHD emotional lability. So far in my log, my moods do shift and they shift greatly but itís sustained for at least a good few days to a couple of weeks at a time. Iím still trying to figure out what my triggers might be, especially considering that my PMS symptoms donít correlate too much with the mood shifts. It does affect me to an extent but I distinctly remember having depressive symptoms throughout my entire menstrual cycle at one point so who knows?
The good news is that sometimes the stimulants help people with treatment resistant depression so it could be the adhd or mood issue but stimulants would help with both. And us females are raveged by our emotions during our periods and before. Are you on any antidepressant meds or a mood stabilizer?


Quote:

One thing I do notice about my moods more than ever is that I perk up like crazy when itís sunny. I think I mentioned this before but itís definitely a big factor. Aside from that, I canít think of many things that particularly stand out as a trigger. My moods just happen to me, I guess.
Thats good old fashioned vitamin d for ya!

Lash107 03-04-18 10:43 AM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MindBlind (Post 1975277)
Last year I was diagnosed with ADHD and I think it’s an accurate diagnosis. However due to my mood swings over the years and antidepressants needing to be switched and adjusted, I’m seriously suspecting that I might have Bipolar 2. I’m not sure about that. I feel stupid because the ADHD diagnosis took so long to get assessed for and people invested a lot of time and effort into helping me but I’m still not functioning. I’m worried that if I bring up Bipolar that they’ll think I’m just shopping for a diagnosis. I don’t know what to do right now. Maybe keep a mood chart?

I’ve never heard of anyone shopping for a bipolar diagnosis. I’m not being salty. Bipolar disorder is....not something I’d wish on anyone. Go see a psychiatrist and tell him or her you’re concerned about your mood changing for a few years now.

You’re not stupid. It’s hard to diagnose and a psychiatrist is the one qualified to determine it. I got misdiagnosed with major depressive disorder, then the SSRI’s, my GP referred me to a great psychiatrist. And he didn’t change my depression diagnosis at first. He evaluated me to rule out physical causes, then a full psychological evaluation. He changed my meds gradually and I have bipolar 1.

It’s hard to diagnose because no one goes to the doctor when their mood is elevated. Get evaluated, ease your concerns and get answers.

MindBlind 03-10-18 07:08 PM

Re: Suspected Bipolar 2. Feeling really stupid.
 
Hi Lash,

Iím currently keeping an eye on my moods and tracking them. Since starting my new job and taking the folic acid, I definitely feel quite optimistic about the future, which I was surprised by. I kind of hope thatís a good sign that itís not bipolar and itís just me being me. I have been a bit more reckless with spending, though, but I think itís just the initial excitement about actually having money (and not considering the consequences of overspending).

Also, being on my feet all day has really improved my sleep, though I do still take a sleeping tablet now and again because my mind still races at night. If I have to keep relying on sleeping tablets Iíll notify my doctor ASAP.

Thank you for commenting!


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